MANILA, APRIL 27, 2011 (MALAYA) '"I am Pro-life. I am against the RH bill."

Expensive vehicles with this sticker are owned by sosyal romanos who have never demonstrated outside illegal abortionist clinics.' THE Romano bishops have ordered their flock to say oratio, obligatory prayers, to their almighty to defeat the Reproductive Health bill. It is now mandatory to pray against the RH bill; all romanos gotta pray for the defeat of the RH.

Nowhere in this RH bill is abortion endorsed; abortion is bad, criminal. The RH bill does not condone abortifacients which is criminal according to the Constitution . The RH bill endorses condoms and contraceptives which are legal according to the Constitution.

The bishops said the romano oratio to defeat the RH bill weapon for the "good" of all.

What is "good" is elusive. A "good" for the Arroyos is not "good" for the Aquinos. What is good for the Maguindanao massacre victims is not good for the Ampatuans. So, what is good?

My greatgrandmother's definition of good: If you and I and everyone in the world did a specific activity, will the result make for a good/better world for all?

If you and I and everyone in the world did to our enemies as the Ampatuan are indicted to have done, will it be a bad world? The answer is Yes--it would not be a good world.

If you and I and everyone in the world worked for the disadvantaged as Mother Teresa did, will it be a good/better world? The answer is Yes--such activities make for a good world.

If everyone in the AFP burglarized its treasury as these generals under indictment did, will the resulting AFP be good? The answer is No--such will make for a bad AFP.

If everyone in the government implemented an anti corruption culture as P-Noy is implementing anti-corruption, will it be good for all Filipinos? The answer is Yes--such will be good for all.

Is this CBCP-ordered oratio meant to threaten, kulit God? To pressure God?

The Philippines has a Constitution that protects life. Life is sacred in the Philippines. It is against the law to threaten life. The laws of the Philippines protect human life. So, why do the romano bishops have to force their flock to pray to protect life? No one in the Philippines is allowed to threaten life. What and whose life are the bishops praying for?

Or are the romano bishops must be praying for the lives of the millions of billions of live sperms flashed down the toilet. The romano bishops' ordered mandatory prayers must be for these sperms.

Ramon Pascual, executive director of the pro-RH Philippine Legislators' Committee on Population & Development, on this oratio of the romano bishops:

"The RH bill has been in the prayers of the RC bishops for the longest time. For some reason, their prayers are not being heard. Prayer and seeking God's guidance on RH bill is not a monopoly of RC bishops or any religion, therefore, is not a monopoly of anti-RH romano bishops."

All the non-romano Christian church followers have been praying for the passing of the RH bill. They see as I do:

Outside expensive highrise condos in Alabang, a new very expensive sports utility is always parked outside a drive-around with the sticker on its window: "I am Pro-life. I am against the RH bill."

If the owner of this van were a construction worker earning minimum P390/day, had eight children as a result of using the Romano Rhythm Calendar for family planning, I doubt that he will be proclaiming himself as anti RH bill.

When the Reproductive Health bill is passed with God's grace, this will be for the good of Filipinos, 90 percent of whom are deprived.


('The dividing line has been drawn. More talk will not lead to any compromise. It's time for a decision.')

CARDINAL Ricardo Vidal, archbishop emeritus of Cebu, is right. There is no more reason for the Church to continue its dialogue with Malacañang on the proposed reproductive health bill. And vice versa.

Both sides have articulated their positions and clearly have no intention of budging from them.

The bill, or at least the consolidated version due for second reading in the House, recognizes the right of couples to determine whether they want to have a child. They may want to space their children. They may want to stop at the number of children they have now.

Their reasons may vary, ranging from their desire to ensure the health of the wife or their recognition that they cannot feed, house or educate more children.

If they so decide that they do not want to have additional children – or any child at all – then they are free to choose the contraception method they want to use.

The bill also recognizes that it is government's duty to provide couples information on the contraception methods that are available and to help them secure access – for free in the case of the poor – to such methods and devices.

In expressing support for the bill, President Aquino has repeatedly stressed his position is grounded on respect for a couple's choice. He is not motivated by population management, that is, in keeping population growth in check to ease the strain on society's resources.

The Church has also made clear it is not against couples seeking to manage the size of their family. What it is against is "artificial" contraception using pills, condoms and intra-uterine devices. These are abortifacients, according to Church doctrine, and, thus, contraception should be limited to the so-called natural or rhythm method and its variants.

(Some supporters of the Church position have other fish to fry, such as the claim that easy access to pills, condoms, IUDs promotes a culture of permissiveness and leads to the erosion of Christian values down the road. In the course of the debate over the reproductive health bill, this argument has effectively been muted which should be welcome because it distracts from the central point of the Church's opposition to artificial contraception – the taking of an unborn life.)

The dividing line has been drawn. More talk will not lead to any compromise. It's time for a decision.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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